Thread, Cord and Beading Wire for Jewelry-Making

There are a lot of stringing materials out there. How do you know which beading thread, cord or wire to use for your jewelry-making projects? Learn all about stringing supplies and their intended uses.

Beading Wire

Wire is a stringing material made from metal threads that is often used for creating sturdy stringing designs.

Accu-Flex® Beading Wire Accu-Flex®
Top-rated Accu-Flex professional-quality beading wire is strong, flexible, kink-resistant and easy to knot and crimp. This favorite utilizes advanced wire-bundling technology for increased strength and durability while still maintaining flexibility. Accu-Flex is available in a wide range of colors, sizes, strand counts and materials.

Read what others are saying about Fire Mountain's Accu-Flex professional-quality beading wire in this beading wire review.

Acculon® Beading Wire
One of the first beading wires manufactured, nylon-coated stainless steel Acculon beading wire is strong, flexible and ideal for beads with rough drill holes. Available in traditional metal tones, diameters and strand counts.

Beadalon Beading Wire Beadalon®
Beadalon beading wire is great for most stringing projects. Created with a clear nylon coating over bright stainless steel wire, Beadalon wire is strong, holds its shape and is easy to work with. It is also kink-resistant, abrasion-resistant and offers a nice drape.

Tigertail™ Beading Wire Tigertail™
Tigertail wire is made of braided stainless steel cable covered with nylon. This beading wire is excellent for use with sharp-edged beads.

Wonder Wiggle Wire® Wonder Wiggle Wire®
With Wonder Wiggle Wire you can add body and fluid movement to necklaces, bracelets, earrings and anklets. This pre-wiggled wire is seven strands of twisted stainless steel wire with colored coating.


Jewelry-making cord tends to be thicker than thread and is used in braiding, lacing, macrame and other applications.

Hemptique Cord Hemptique™
Natural hemp cord is a 100% biodegradable and eco-friendly stringing choice with plenty of colors to choose from. Use for kumihimo, bead stringing, macramé, scrapbooking and more. Hemp cord is durable and can withstand large amounts of embellishments.

Imitation Silk Cord Imitation Silk
Made from rayon, imitation silk cord is perfect for multicolored macramé and beading. Imitation silk is easily knotted, flexible and drapes well.

Imitation Sinew Cord Imitation Sinew
This waxed cord is filament polypropylene fiber. Imitation sinew is uniform and consistent throughout and waxed to help it move through leather and beads more easily. Cut imitation sinew cord to any length and even split lengthwise. This cord is ideal for a variety of Native American art forms such as ''The Dream Catcher'', beading, leatherwork and more.

Invizi™-Cord Invizi™-Cord
Create floating necklaces with reliable strength and flexible drape using clear Invizi-Cord. The versatile cord knots easily and is a favorite for not only jewelry projects but also wind chimes and suncatchers.

Leather Cord Leather
Leather cord is available in natural, dyed or coated hues and various shapes including round and flat versions. Leather cord is a rugged material that is also flexible and smooth.

Leatherette Bolo Cord
Braided Leatherette
Tightly braided leatherette cords are ideal for use as bolo ties, bracelets and Western-style jewelry. Finish the ends of this faux leather cord with bolo tips, wire wrapping or glue-in cord ends.

Nylon Parachute Cord Nylon Parachute Cord
Nylon cord has a durable, smooth braided outer shell with seven inner strands to form a strong military-specification parachute cord. Weave it into survival-style bracelets, lanyards, belts, dog leashes and key chains.

Satinique™ Cord Satinique™
This satin fiber cord offers boundless possibilities for stringing, knot template projects, kumihimo and more. Satinique is available in a variety of widths and colors, including multicolored, striped and metallic thread options.

Suede Lace Cord Suede Lace
Available in genuine and faux varieties, this flat cord comes in a variety of sizes and colors. Suede lace cord provides incredible comfort and drape to jewelry designs. Perfect for lacing and stringing applications. Finish ends with a variety of terminator findings, including ribbon crimp ends, cord ends and clasps.

Synthetic Rubber Cord Synthetic Rubber Cord
Synthetic rubber cord is waterproof, flexible and sturdy. This cord is comfortable, cost-effective and latex-free.

Silicone Cord Silicone Cord
Latex-free silicone cord is comfortable and versatile. Hollow center options fit memory wire snugly and can be used to cover wire completely or as colorful spacers between beads. Silicone cord necklaces and bracelets are also available.

Velveteen Cord Velveteen Cord (with rubber)
Soft and easy-to-use, this cord has a plush velveteen exterior and a hollow black rubber interior. It keeps its shape, resists creasing, cuts easily and will not fray. It can be used as a traditional cord, put over memory wire or cut into velveteen beads.

Waxed Cotton Cord Waxed Cotton Cord
This tightly woven round cord made of biodegradable cotton has a light wax treatment for a soft, flexible drape and to make bead stringing easier. Waxed cotton cord is often used as a vegan-friendly alternative to leather cord and is available in multiple sizes and colors. Waxed cotton cord is great for kumihimo, macramé, braiding and other jewelry-making techniques.

Stretch Cord

Elastic Floss Stretch Elastic Floss
Latex-free elastic cord is a 25% polyester, 75% rubber blend that keeps its memory longer than most. Elastic floss cord knots superbly and can be used for lightweight jewelry and craft applications. Finishing with a surgeon's knot is recommended.

Beadalon® Elonga™ Elastic Cord Beadalon® Elonga™
Elonga stretch cord from Beadalon is made of several fine, elastic threads that have been bonded together for the ultimate stretch and durability without looking or feeling stiff. This cord is ideal for lightweight beads and can be threaded through beading needles for easier bead stringing.

Powercord® Powercord®
The major advantage of no-fray, latex-free Powercord is that it returns to its original shape after stretching, making it perfect for chokers, stretch bracelets or anklets. Clear and colorful options, as well as a variety of sizes, are available. This stretchy cord knots easily to terminate strands.


Beading thread tends to be pliable and soft, great for knotting, looming and working with seed beads. Most jewelry-making threads require a needle. To figure out the jewelry needle you'll need, view our ''What to Know: Needles and Threads'' article.

Beadalon WildFire Thread Beadalon® WildFire™
WildFire beading thread from Beadalon is a specially braided thread with a smooth, thermally bonded coating that creates a superior product with strength and durability. This knottable, supple cord is super strong, waterproof and has almost no stretch. It is ideal for bead stitching, embroidery, multi-strand seed bead designs and more. To quickly cut and fuse WildFire thread ends and to prevent fraying, use the WildFire Cord Cutter.

Berkley® FireLine Thread Berkley® FireLine Thread
FireLine thread by Berkley designed for stringing and weaving projects is recognized as the strongest fiber per diameter ever created. The advanced technology used to create FireLine provides an ultra-thin diameter that is three times stronger than regular monofilament. FireLine beading thread is also UV protected, so it won't deteriorate because of exposure to sunlight. This thread does not stretch or tangle, threads effortlessly and resists abrasion. This material is great for weaving seed beads. We offer FireLine in six diameters and five colors.

Berkley NanoFil Thread Berkley® NanoFil® Thread
Berkley® NanoFil® thread is made with hundreds of molecularly linked and shaped Dyneema® nanofilaments that are stronger than steel. This thread resists fraying, doesn't stretch and has fewer kinks and tangles. It is also ultra-thin and clear, which makes it wonderful for complex seed bead projects.

C-Lon Thread C-Lon®
C-Lon thread is a UV-resistant nylon monochord that is a favorite choice for its softness, flexibility and color range. Size D thread is ideal for use with size 11/0 seed beads and size AA thread is best for size 15/0 seed beads. C-Lon is a favorite for micro macramé, kumihimo, bead crochet, tatting, finger weaving, loomwork, fringe and stitching. It is recommended to lightly coat this thread with beeswax to help prevent fraying.

Griffin High Performance Multi-Fiber Thread Griffin High-Performance Multi-Fiber
Made of the same thread that's used for parachutes and sails, this thread is strong yet stays as soft and supple as silk. Comes with an attached stainless steel needle.

Griffin Nylon Power Griffin Nylon Power
Glossy and robust, this nylon thread has extra-strong fibers with special stretch tension. When the thread is pulled it will expand and return to its original size when released, which is great for precision knotting projects. Nylon is an ideal beading thread for hard, tough materials. Nylon is also available in a myriad of color and size choices to accommodate different design projects.

Griffin Silk Griffin Natural Silk
Silk thread is perfect for knotting pearls, turquoise, malachite and other soft natural beads. This thread comes in thicker diameters, allowing you the option of working with larger bead holes. The drape and softness of this beading thread make it a great choice for stringing, knotting and Kumihimo braiding techniques. Available in 20 colors and 13 diameters, ranging from 0.3 to 1.05 millimeters.

Kevlar® Thread Kevlar®
Kevlar is well-known as a material for bulletproof vests, but it also makes for great beading thread. This filament thread is very thin, yet incredibly strong and great for heavy designs. The thread is smooth and allows for multiple passes through seed beads. Kevlar has a naturally yellowish hue and can't be bleached white, but it can be dyed in other colors using regular fabric dye. It's recommended to use fisherman-type knots with Kevlar since overhand knots can weaken the overall strength of the thread.

K.O. Thread K.O. Thread
K.O. pre-waxed beading thread is colorfast, strong and can be securely knotted. This thread also resists abrasion, fraying, tangling and stretching. A thread burner can be used to cauterize raw ends.

Miyuki Dura-Line Thread Miyuki® Dura-Line Thread
This highly durable, tough braided beading thread is made from 100% gel-spun polyethylene. Miyuki Dura-Line's small diameter thread will pass easily through a beading needle, making it ideal for projects requiring extra strength or multiple passes through beads with narrow stringing holes.

Nozue Sonoko Thread Nozue Sonoko Thread
Fray-resistant Nozue Sonoko nylon thread has high friction resistance, making it last longer under movement and tension. When this non-twisted thread is cut the end fibers remain together, making for easier threading without the need to wax.

Nymo® Thread Nymo®
Nymo is a nylon beading thread specifically made for working with seed beads, including loomwork. It's a good idea to coat Nymo jewelry thread with beeswax or Thread Magic® to reduce the chances of fraying.

Purely Silk™ Thread Purely Silk™
Made with 100% natural silk, Purely Silk thread is easily knottable for producing professional results and is durable enough to withstand the abrasion of pearls, glass beads and gemstones while remaining smooth with a soft sheen.

Silkon Nylon Thread Silkon®
Silkon is a special heat-set bonded nylon thread available in many colors. This durable stringing material can be used with abrasive gemstone or metal beads and is resistant to fraying. Lightweight thread works best for smaller gems and freshwater pearls. Medium-weight thread is suitable for plastic, glass and wood beads. Heavyweight thread handles gemstone beads, metal and larger glass beads.

One-G nylon thread is a specially made jewelry-making thread that is strong and shred-resistant. This thread is easy to use and untangle when stitching seed beads.

Wire Thread Wire Thread
High-quality, hand-spun wire thread from Sweden is comprised of 96% tin and 4% sterling silver. Perfect for traditional Sámi-inspired jewelry or tin thread embroidery.

For more tips and information on threads, click here.

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Customer Comments

We would like to share some of the customer comments we received in response to the article, "Thread, Cord and Wire for Jewelry-Making," featured in a newsletter. Please keep in mind that the comments expressed below are those of our customers and do not reflect the views of Fire Mountain Gems and Beads.

"For the first time I found an article that states just what each type of beading material should be used for and what they are made out of! It was the most informative article that I have ever read. Thank you so much! Sincerely,"
- Karen

"Just wanted to send you a quick note to let you know how much I appreciate all your information and charts that are made available for all of us 'artists' out there!!! Thanks a million!! All of this information just makes our jobs (or hobbies, etc.) so much easier. Love your site and your products."
- Marcy

"I have just printed out the 'Thread, Cord and Wire for Jewelry-Making' which is going to be immensely helpful, please keep your tip and helpful info coming, good work and my congratulations to the team who put the information together. Thank you so much. Regards,"
- Dawn

"I appreciated the stringing info from the 'encyclobeadia' and to know the differences in wires. I'm trying to learn wire wrapping and this helps decide what to use that is best for my project. Thank you!"
- Suzie

"The article is very informative and helpful. It is good for beginners like me. Thanks."
- Smith

"Thanks SO much for this reference summary on wire, thread and cord. All of these reference resources I have received from you have been most helpful. I print them out and keep them in a special binder.

This one, in particular, was useful because I tend to stick to what I always use. Now I have more info about what I might try to go in new directions. Cordially,"
- Evie

"Thank you so very much for your instructional/informational pages. I copy and save them as my guides for guiding my creative impulses toward better beading et cetera. Please continue to teach us."
- Anastasia